VISCA FC BARCELONA!
FC Barcelona clinched their fourth Spanish la Liga title in five years and have been crowned Spanish champions for the 22nd time on Saturday night after rivals and defending champions Real Madrid CF were held to a 1-1 draw at RCD Espanyol. FC Barcelona was mathematically already the champion of the Spanish la Liga, but Barça still managed to win on Sunday night against Atletico Madrid in Vicente Calderon stadium in Madrid. Even tough, FC Barcelona fell behind to Falcao’s 28th goal of the season, the Catalan club were not to be denied. Alexis Sanchez struck the equalizer on 72 minutes and the comeback was complete eight minutes later when Atletico Madrid player Gabi turned the ball past his own goalkeeper. By winning la Liga, FC Barcelona continue to be the dominant force in the 21st century. Since the year 2000, FC Barcelona have won six league titles, followed by Real Madrid (5), Valencia (2) and Deportivo la Coruna (1).
INTERESTING STATS AND THE SEASON:
In the 2008/09 season, with former FC Barcelona coach/player Pep Guardiola and Tito VIlanova on the bench, FC Barcelona won the league with 87 points (27 victories, 6 draws and 5 defeats). The following year, FC Barcelona won the la Liga with 99 points (31 victories, 6 draws and 1 defeat). In the 2010/11 season, Barça claimed their third consecutive la Liga title with 96 points (30 victories, 6 draws and 2 defeats). With 3 matches left on the schedule this year, FC Barcelona has already collected 91 points (29 victories, 4 draws and 2 defeats) and if they win the rest of their games, they will equal the best ever point haul in La Liga. In addition, they’ve scored 107 goals, a record breaking tally for any team with three games left to play this season. This is also the first time in club history that FC Barcelona have won la Liga after losing the year before, where they won consecutive league title before. On three occasions FC Barcelona had to wait at least two years before they managed to regain la Liga crown (from 1944/45 to 1947/48, from 1948/49 to 1951/52, and from 2005/06 to 2008/09.
Just like in the past seasons, Barça broke records that seemed to be out of reach. The most notable of which was the team’s sensational first half of the season, when they won 55 of 57 possible points. It was the best ever start to a league campaign in Spanish la Liga history, and it saw the Blaugrana 10 points clear at the top in December. Furthermore, Leo Messi has netted 46 goals and he’s the front runner to win the Pichichi award. Last year he scored 50 goals. This is FC Barcelona’s era, an era marked by a unique style of play. Long live the champions!
However, this isn’t just another la Liga title, the Club’s 22nd Liga holds special meaning. The team had to overcome extremely difficult setbacks. The illnesses of Tito Vilanova and Éric Abidal left the team without a head manager and one of the best defenders on the roster for part of the season. The players and coaching staff, led by Roura and Altimira, met the challenge with hard work and an unflinching commitment to the Club. Not to mention the biggest setback of the season is the injury of FC Barcelona Football star Lionel Messi, who could not perform for his team for weeks because of an hamstring injury, from which he is still suffering. Each and every one of them had to step up to secure the league title, a league that was always under FC Barcelona control, from the first to the last week of the competition.
Cesc Fabregas, Alexis Sanchez, Alex Song and Jordi Alba, who were brought into the Club over the past two seasons, have won their first La Liga title
Marc Bartra, Martin Montoya, Jonathan Dos Santos and Cristian Tello, all of whom played for Barça B last season, also won their first La Liga crown. Here’s a look at each one individually:
TO THE NEXT SEASON!
Winning the Spanish la Liga weeks before the competition ending reflects the fact that Barça followers regard success in La Liga as only half-fulfilling their demands. In addition to domestic success, fans also expect their team to win – or at least come close to winning – the Champions League. However, the brutally demolishment of 7-0 against Bayern Munich prompted a debate that will continue well into the summer months. Many people believe the team needs new transfers for the new season and even called for coach Vilanova to be sacked. Although that view was held by just the minority of the fans.
A new central defender is a priority for the summer as Barça defenders suffered serious injuries this season. Barça came close to signing Thiago Silva before he opted to join Paris St-Germain last year, and the Brazilian could come back into the frame, while Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels and Roma’s impressive teenager Marquinhos are also being touted as potential recruits.
One enforced change could come in the goalkeeping department, where Victor Valdes has rejected a new contract and may therefore be sold this summer while he’s still valuable, rather than being allowed to leave for nothing when his contract expires at the end of next season. Manchester United’s David De Gea, Liverpool’s Pepe Reina and Valencia’s Vicente Guiata are among the candidates to replace him.
David Villa is another potential departee. Despite speculation to the contrary from the British media, the Catalan club always insisted the striker would not be allowed to join Arsenal – or anyone else – during the January transfer window. They have, however, been notably less eager to state that Villa will be at Barcelona next season. In his place, Brazilian star Neymar is a red-hot tip to arrive in Catalonia. The flamboyant winger has been a long-term target for FC Barcelona, who have openly admitted they are interested in securing his services from Santos.
The fans are already excited with the upcoming summer arrivals, such as the Brazilian football talent Neymar, a central defender and a goalkeeper. But that could well be it for FC Barcelona.
What do you think of the potential new arrivals of FC Barcelona? Give us your thoughts about who you think Barça should sign this summer.
Here is a short cartoon video of our champion players!